Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Messthetics #104: D.I.Y. 77-81 South Wales I Messthetics #105: D.I.Y. 77-81 Scotland I
To those of you not in the know as to what the Messthetics series consists of (and not to be a Snooty Sam, but that's all of you) think of them as the Punk version of the Nuggets box sets. Much like the Garage Rock era in the 60's where everyone and their mother formed a band in the wake of the Beatles and Stones, Messthetics collects punk/post-punk/ect bands that formed, released a 45 or two and then disappeared forever. The main two influences to these groups (apart from The Sex Pistols) were Scritti Politti (this was before they turned into a terrible White Soul group in the 80's) and The Desperate Bicycles. Both bands promoted the DIY ideal that anyone CAN cut a single and put a record out and everyone SHOULD do so.
These two discs are, if i'm counting correctly, the 13th and 14th releases in the Messthetics series. Now as you would expect these compilations can be mixed bags. Not every track is a winner but there are always enough revelations on each release to warrant you checking them out. These compilations document the beginnings of the DIY and Indie movements as we know them today. A lot of the Indie and underground music scenes wouldn't be the same if it weren't for groups like this. Including yours. What, you think Pavement invented shambolic guitar playing? Not even.
Oh and some of the band's names are truly priceless: Tax Exiles, Discount Chiefs, Crash Action Winners, Ralph & The Ponytails, Puritan Guitars and my personal favorites Scrotum Poles. So if you're interested in checking out some great lost punk tunes or just want to impress people with ridiculously obscure bands on your next mix, give these or any of the discs in the Messthetics series a try. Odds are you'll find at least a few tunes you dig.